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Dark Star: Hyper-Drive Edition [Import]

Dan O'Bannon , Dre Pahich , John Carpenter    G (General Audience)   DVD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
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Product Description

In the mid twenty-first century, mankind has reached a point in its technological advances to enable colonization of the far reaches of the universe. DARK STAR is a futuristic scout ship traveling far in advance of colony ships. Armed with Exponential Thermosteller Bombs, it prowls the darkest reaches of space on a mission to seek out and destroy unstable planets ahead of the colonist. But there is one obstacle that its crew members did not count on -- one of the ship's thinking and talking bombs is lodged in the bay, threatening to destroy the entire ship and crew! DARK STAR was originally intended to be a 68 minute film. Jack Harris, the Hollywood producer, convinced the filmmakers to shoot 15 minutes of extra footage and he released the expanded version theatrically in 1975 through Bryanston Pictures. To honor the filmmakers wishes, this new DVD will contain both the shorter 1974 Original version and the longer 1975 Theatrical release version. The 2010 Hyperdrive Edition DVD has been sourced from a new 16x9, 35mm transfer, with a further pain-staking, frame-by-frame digital restoration of the video master to produce the best picture ever seen. The soundtrack has also been digitally enhanced and restored to Dolby Digital 5.1.

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Most helpful customer reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
By J. Lovins TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:DVD
VCI Entertainment presents ~ "DARK STAR-HYPERDRIVE EDITION" (1974) (83 min/Color) (Dolby digitally remastered) --- Take for instance director John Carpenter who may be known for his other accomplishments of motion pictures we now realize were good even great --- But this film was the groundbreaking moment that gave us other films from other directors and writers, such as Star Wars --- Now enters co-conspirator Dan O'Bannon, the two filmed this with a zero budget, much like a student project and became a cult classic. --- Not bad for two college chums that started out as a student film and was eventually expanded into a theatrical feature, lucky for us fans, as they say the rest is history.

The copy of the film is quite good and the documentaries are an added plus for all collectors and film enthusiasts --- This new "Hyperdrive" edition is a great update thanks to its abundant special features. Let there be light, indeed --- A must have for your collection of rare and early films in this genre.

Mr. Jim's Ratings:
Image: 4 1/2 Stars
Sound: 4 Stars
Extras: 4 1/2 Stars
Overall: 5 Stars [Both Versions of Dark Star & Bonus Features]

Under the production staff of:
John Carpenter [Director/Screenwriter/Producer]
Dan O'Bannon [Original Story]
J. Stein Kaplan [Associate Producer]
Jack H. Harris [Executive Producer]
John Carpenter [Original Score]
Douglas Knapp [Cinematographer]
Dan O'Bannon [Film Editor]

the cast includes:
Brian Narelle ... Lt. Doolittle
Cal Kuniholm ... Boiler
Dre Pahich ... Talby
Dan O'Bannon ... Sgt. Pinback

BIOS:
1.
Read more ›
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars In the beginning there was darkness Aug. 10 2011
By bernie TOP 100 REVIEWER
Format:DVD
This movie stands on it' own. Yes you can compare this movie to others and say pieces are a parity of other movies. Yet if you look at the big picture you will see there is no forced dialog or plots to do such parity. This is the real space. The one that grates on your nerves after 20years in space. You learn the politics of procurement, the virtues of independent thinking, and what it is like to have a pet. Very few movies nowadays question existence its self. And along with the profound questions that makes science fiction worth watching, the are great songs and mental images of the sea. Lets cut to the chase this is a funny movie that is over before you are ready.

My cat looks just as round and acts the same way as the alien.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.2 out of 5 stars  36 reviews
22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "Dark Star-Hyperdrive Edition ... Carpenter & O'Bannon ... VCI Ent. (2010)" Nov. 8 2010
By J. Lovins - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
VCI Entertainment presents ~ "DARK STAR-HYPERDRIVE EDITION" (1974) (83 min/Color) (Dolby digitally remastered) --- Take for instance director John Carpenter who may be known for his other accomplishments of motion pictures we now realize were good even great --- But this film was the groundbreaking moment that gave us other films from other directors and writers, such as Star Wars --- Now enters co-conspirator Dan O'Bannon, the two filmed this with a zero budget, much like a student project and became a cult classic. --- Not bad for two college chums that started out as a student film and was eventually expanded into a theatrical feature, lucky for us fans, as they say the rest is history.

The copy of the film is quite good and the documentaries are an added plus for all collectors and film enthusiasts --- This new "Hyperdrive" edition is a great update thanks to its abundant special features. Let there be light, indeed --- A must have for your collection of rare and early films in this genre.

Mr. Jim's Ratings:
Image: 4 1/2 Stars
Sound: 4 Stars
Extras: 4 1/2 Stars
Overall: 5 Stars [Both Versions of Dark Star & Bonus Features]

Under the production staff of:
John Carpenter [Director/Screenwriter/Producer]
Dan O'Bannon [Original Story]
J. Stein Kaplan [Associate Producer]
Jack H. Harris [Executive Producer]
John Carpenter [Original Score]
Douglas Knapp [Cinematographer]
Dan O'Bannon [Film Editor]

the cast includes:
Brian Narelle ... Lt. Doolittle
Cal Kuniholm ... Boiler
Dre Pahich ... Talby
Dan O'Bannon ... Sgt. Pinback

BIOS:
1. John Carpenter [Director/Producer/Writer/Actor/Composer]
Date of Birth: 16 January 1948 - Carthage, New York
Date of Death: Still Living

2. Dan O'Bannon [Director/Screenwriter]
Date of Birth: 30 September 1946 - St. Louis, Missouri
Date of Death: 17 December 2009 - Santa Monica, California

DISC ONE (1):
SPECIAL FEATURES:
1. Interview with Sci-fi author Alan Dean Foster
2. Audio Commentary by "Super-Fan" Andrew Gilchrist
3. Interview with actor Brian Narelle - "Lt. Doolittle"
4. 3D Guide to the Dark Star Ship
5. Written Intro by Dan O'Bannon
6. Trivia
7. Original Dark Star trailer
8. Both Versions of Dark Star

DISC TWO (2):
BONUS FEATURES:
1. "LET THERE BE LIGHT: THE ODYSSEY OF "DARK STAR" - An all new, feature-length documentary exploring the controversial making of the John Carpenter (HALLOWEEN) and Dan O'Bannon (ALIEN),
2. Exclusive interviews with actor Brian Narelle and cinematographer Doug Knapp

Special footnote, Won and Nominated Awards ~ Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films,(USA) Won Golden Scroll "Best Special Effects" (1976) recipients were Douglas Knapp, Bill Taylor, John Carpenter and Dan O'Bannon --- Nominated for Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America 1976 Nebula Award "Best Dramatic Writing" (1976)
for recipients John Carpenter and Dan O'Bannon --- Hugo Awards (1976) Nominated "Best Dramatic Presentation"

The talking bomb is one of the funniest characters to ever appear in a space movie, rivaling HAL and the robot in Forbidden Planet --- This is a deep and meaningful film inclusive with humor and thought provoking scenes ---There is a look of insight into the human spirit, plus the plight of the isolation --- You won't be disappointed as I highly recommend to fans of a good science fiction storytelling, who won't be hesitant to laugh out loud when the door of humor is opened --- It's an acquired taste, and if you're in the right frame of mind you'll love it --- The country song "Benson Arizona" still gets my funny bone -- good memories still linger.

Total Time: 83 min on DVD ~ VCI Entertainment #8550 ~ (10/26/2010)
19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Weird little oddity, um, odyssey March 29 2011
By Niugui Cilantron - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This is one of those cult movies that you'll either love or hate. I vaguely remembered seeing this on TV ages ago, so after reading some of the reviews for the single disc version, I decided to get it. So I'm watching this thing, thinking "Okay, that line was vaguely funny." Snorting a couple times. Then, about 25 minutes in, one of the crew members (O'Bannon, later to write "Alien") has to feed the alien. And it's a beachball with feet. Yeah, I read the reviews, but you have to see this thing to believe it. The thing has personality! This will either make or break the movie for you. You'll either consider it to be so ridiculous that it's hilarious or you'll just think it's stupid.

Yes, they were obviously influenced by "2001: a Space Odyssey." Yes, they may have been influenced by illegal substances (I have no evidence of this, other than the movie). No, they can't act (but they're still funny). Yes, the special effects are very cheap. Still, I found it to be a lot of fun. Can't give it more than 3 stars, though.

Special features: there's a 30 minute interview with Alan Dean Foster who wrote the novelization (!) of this movie. There's a 2 hour (longer than the movie!) documentary covering every possible aspect of the film (more than you want to know, probably, unless you're a film school student.) Various other and sundry doodads. The most important reason to get this version as opposed to the single disc version (I gather from reading those reviews) is that they've cleaned up the picture quality tremendously. If you want this movie, this is the version to get.
21 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wait for Blu-Ray Release? Oct. 23 2010
By Arthur R. Valencia - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
This first, major John Carpenter film release, is a fun trip through outer space. Everything is run by computers, even a Bomb. The Bomb goes haywire when damaged and lodges in the bay and starts to 'count down'. The crew tries everything they can to try and stop the count down. This when the fun really starts. Excellent direction, filmplay and acting. I highly recommend this film.

As far as buying this version in standard dvd format, you might want to wait for a Blu-Ray version, if one should come out later. I have the first version in standard format, but this version does have more and better specials. According to the product review, they have upgraded the print for this release. Also, check out the discusions on this topic, going on below.
7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "Good Carpenter First!" Dec 27 2010
By Gregorypwilson - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
John Carpenter's 1974 sci-fi comedy features a group
of space explorers dealing with mishaps while on a
mission to rid unstable planets. This 2-disc set
has good picture and sound plus neat extras.
I recommend this good Carpenter first.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great film, unusual spirit! Jan. 9 2012
By xxgrendelxx - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
I ran this film past my brother in law, himself a fan of low-budget sci-fi and horror, and he hated it. He just didn't get it's special laconic humor.

I can't describe exactly what that humor is but I grew up around it from weed-smoking, emotionally burned out, sardonic, ex-hippy radical older relations. I recognised this crew right away. Buck knives, beards, honky-tonk and home-grown. They just don't make them like this anymore.

If you're a fan of the music and attitude of Ed Sanders, Commander Cody, and Kinky Friedman then you will "get" this film right away, otherwise, this might be too slim a slice of weirdness for you.

Ed Sander's "Looking at the Beer Cans on the Moon" should have been part of the soundtrack.
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